The first time I realized I was a decent writer was way back in second grade. Incidentally, at the exact same moment, I realized for the very first time that my creativity set me apart. As a finalist in a state-level writing competition in Kentucky, I was asked to select one living person with whom I would have lunch with if given the opportunity, and then write an essay explaining why and describing how I envisioned the lunch would take place. It was the late 1980’s, and my fellow finalists chose all of the usual suspects ‒ Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Mikhail Gorbachev, Princess Diana…
I chose John Stamos. Yes, that John Stamos. At the time he was Uncle Jesse on “Full House”, and I was much more interested in talking about that than I was communism or the economy. I wrote about what was interesting to me, and I was rewarded with a medal. From that moment on, I never looked back.
My Abigail Phelps series of books (I’ve Loved These Days, Scenes From Highland Falls, and Two Thousand Years) have carried on that tradition. My writing is saturated in pop culture, full of my favorite celebrity guys, and most of all, it’s made up of what is interesting to me. When I began writing the Abigail trilogy, I was working more than fifty hours a week as Vice President of a commercial bank which was in the beginning stages of a merger. I was active in my community, on the boards of several civic organizations, and involved in so many different things I couldn’t begin to list them all. More important than any of that, I’m a wife and a mom. What I wasn’t, I thought, was a writer. Certainly not an author ‒ that intimidating title which I was certain I would never deserve. I wrote for fun. I wrote as a release. I wrote because it was nice to spend late nights creating dialogue for George Clooney and JFK Jr.
Now that the books are out there, and I call myself an author, I still do it because it’s fun. I do it because writing dialogue for George Clooney will never be boring. And I do it because it’s interesting to me ‒ and I can’t tell you how grateful and humbled I am to discover that it seems to be interesting to others as well.
Bethany’s Books – On Sale for 99 cents! – May 15th only
“The very first time you met me you knew that he would never be the same again, didn’t you? For the record, I was never the same again either. And while times have changed and opportunities have been lost, I still know in my heart of hearts that I never will be. But we can’t go back, and we can’t undo. What’s more, I don’t really want to. While my life is not perfect, it is uniquely, ridiculously mine, and I would not trade it.”
Abigail Phelps has written her memoirs, but the world has never heard of her. So why should anyone care? Perhaps no one would, if the letter in which Abigail reflects on changing times and lost opportunities weren’t addressed to Jacqueline Onassis, and the man who would never be the same weren’t John F. Kennedy Jr.
Put aside all you think you know and jump into the greatest love story the world has never known.
“I knew that Senator Kennedy would not accept defeat. He would not step aside and allow his horrible error to be a wake-up call. He would not reach out to me and suggest we put our bitter feud behind us. He would try again, for Kennedy men do not give up. They don’t give up on their dreams of the White House, they don’t give up once they decide they want to spend their lives with the woman they love, and they don’t give up until they’ve gotten rid of anything standing in their way.”
The delusions of a woman detached from reality? Or the scandalous, well-kept secrets of the greatest love story the world has never known? In the second installment of the Abigail Phelps Series, Abigail’s stories become even more difficult to believe, and absolutely impossible to deny.
“Women half Abigail’s age would envy her body – a body fitting a star athlete, a Hollywood actress, or a young lady desired by scandalous politicians. Her face showed depth of character, a result of more sorrow but also more joy than most of us could handle. And her hair. The breathtaking auburn curls remained, and though there may have been isolated streaks of gray throughout the voluminous strands, I found it impossible to not picture Christopher Dean playing with the curls in a café in Vienna, and Sergei Grinkov unknowingly causing pain, but more importantly comfort, as he caressed her hair after the attack by Ted Kennedy. And I couldn’t help but visualize John Kennedy’s jaw dropping to the floor when he saw her for the first time in so long, gorgeous in a purple dress, hair down though she so often wore it up. Some things I envisioned had occurred, others had not. But they were all unmistakably Abigail Phelps.”
Abigail Phelps and John Kennedy Jr. weren’t destined to live happily ever after. In this, the dramatic conclusion to the Abigail Phelps Series, we learn that there is something even better than a fairy tale ending. Sometimes it’s better to have no ending at all.
“How do you know your heart is still beating? Do you have to see it or feel it to know? No, you just know. You know because you live. Well, Abby is my heart and I’m hers. We just know.”
Bethany Turner was born and raised in Kentucky, but now lives in Colorado with her husband and two sons. She studied theatre at the University of Kentucky before going on to a career in bank management, which eventually gave way to writing. She finally knows what she wants to be when she grows up.
Where to find Bethany…
Where to find Abigail Phelps…